The amount of pesticides used per hectare of fruit trees and berry bushes has decreased, according to Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) preliminary data on the use of pesticides in crop sowings and plantations for the 2019 harvest.
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The amount of pesticides used per apple per hectare of plantation decreased from 1.28 kg in 2014 to 0.82 kg in 2019 or by 36%, for cherries from 1.28 kg to 0.31 kg or by 76%, respectively, for plums – from 0 , 83 kg to 0.30 kg or 63%, for pears – from 2.18 kg to 1.87 kg or by 14%, for raspberries – from 0.44 kg to 0.16 kg or by 63%, but for strawberries – from 0.44 kg to 0.06 kg or by 86%.
In 2019, 23% of plum areas, 25% raspberries, 30% apples, 31% cherries, 36% strawberries and 56% pears were treated with pesticides.
“Depending on the weather, pesticide use varies from year to year. In dry conditions, various pests controlled by insecticides are more prevalent, while in wetlands both diseases and weeds, controlled by fungicides and herbicides respectively, are relatively drier. 2019 was relatively drier – especially spring and the first half of summer, therefore, the development of diseases was less and fungicides were used little to control them, but in some fields it was not necessary to use them at all, “comments Vents Ezers, Director of the Plant Protection Department of the State Plant Protection Service.
The amount of pesticides used per hectare of sown and planted areas in open field vegetable areas has increased for carrots, beets and onions, but decreased for cabbage. In 2019, the amount of pesticides used in one hectare of carrot sowings increased from 2.09 kg in 2014 to 3.34 kg in 2019 or by 60%, onions – from 3.03 kg to 3.49 kg or by 15%, respectively, but table beets – from 0.70 to 1.78 kg or by 153%.
The amount of pesticides used per hectare in cabbage plantations decreased from 1.01 kg in 2014 to 0.86 kg in 2019 or by 15%, but in potato plantations from 2.05 kg to 2.00 kg or by 2.4%, respectively.
In 2019, 87% of cabbage, 89% of onion plantations, 90% of carrots and beet crops were treated with pesticides, mainly herbicides to control weeds. Pesticides were used in 67% of potato plantations.
The increase in the amount of pesticides used per hectare of sown carrots in open field vegetables was influenced by the increase in the use of herbicides from 1.83 kg in 2014 to 3.10 kg in 2019 or by 69%, for beets – from 0.69 kg to 1.68 kg, respectively. or by 143% and onions – from 1.15 kg to 1.96 kg or by 70%.
“The increase in herbicide use can be explained by seasonal differences in different years due to changes in the range of herbicides used. Effective weed control in vegetable areas is a key condition for harvesting. The choice of a particular type of herbicide depends on crop development and weather conditions. dry weather conditions necessitated the use of herbicides after the germination of crops, such as prosulfocarb and metamitron preparations, the consumption of which was relatively higher per hectare, “explains V. Ezers.
In 2019, fungicides were most used for apples and raspberries – 78% of the total amount of pesticides used for both apples and raspberries, pears 66%, cherries – 62%, strawberries – 77%, potatoes – 84%.
In turn, herbicides for weed control are most used in table beet sowings – 94% of the total amount of pesticides used in table beet sowings, in carrot areas, respectively 93%, in cabbage plantations – 75%, in onion plantations – 56%.
Last year, insecticides were used very little – only 21% of pears and 11% of the amount of pesticides used in cabbage plantations were insecticides.
The use of pesticides on crops is also affected by the use of pesticides containing heavier active substances. In 2019, three herbicide active ingredients – aclonifen, pendimethalin and prosulfocarb – accounted for 85% of all pesticides used in carrots to control weeds in carrots,
In table beet areas, 48% of the total amount of pesticides used was one herbicide active ingredient – metamitron, the use of which per hectare of beets increased from 0.93 kg in 2014 to 1.49 kg in 2019 or by 60%.
In onion areas, 87% of the total amount of pesticides used in onions consisted of the herbicide active ingredients aclonifen, pendimethalin and a fungicide, which provides plant protection against fungal diseases – mancozeb.
The CSB conducts surveys on the use of pesticides in agricultural crops once every five years.